In an interleague series matching the least-potent offense against the worst pitching staff, the Oakland Athletics visit the Colorado Rockies for three games beginning Tuesday. The Athletics are batting .220, lowest in the major leagues, and averaging 3.4 runs, worst in the American League. They were swept by Arizona over the weekend after winning three of four against Texas last week. The Rockies, who have lost five straight, own baseball’s highest team ERA at 5.31 and highest batting average against (.297), and their starters (6.17, .317) are even worse. The rotation posted a 14.89 ERA during the losing streak.
Jeremy Guthrie, who was acquired during the off-season from Baltimore and was Colorado’s opening day starter, is 1-2 with an 8.87 ERA at home. He will oppose Oakland’s Bartolo Colon, who is coming off his strongest start of the season with eight scoreless innings against Texas.
Oakland is last in the American League West, nine games behind Texas. Colorado is 13 1/2 games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers. The only reason it is not in the National League West basement is because San Diego – the worst team in baseball – resides there.
Athletics Rockies Betting
When: 8:40 PM ET, Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Where: Coors Field, Denver, Colorado
TV: 8:40 p.m. ET, CS California (Oakland), Root Sports (Colorado)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Athletics RH Bartolo Colon (5-6, 3.92 ERA) vs. Rockies RH Jeremy Guthrie (3-4, 6.35)
Colon allowed five hits and struck out five in the Athletics’ 2-0 victory over the Rangers on Wednesday. Colon, who snapped a two-game losing streak, has pitched well in two straight games – he yielded two runs in seven innings at Kansas City on June 1. Colon’s only start against Colorado came in 2002, a 5-4 victory while with Cleveland. Three players expected in Tuesday’s starting lineup – Todd Helton, Michael Cuddyer and Marco Scutaro – are a combined 10-for-38 against Colon.
Guthrie allowed seven runs and 11 hits in 3 1/3 innings in a 10-0 loss at Arizona on Tuesday and has yielded 24 runs (20 earned) and 40 hits in his last four starts covering 21 1/3 innings. He is 2-3 in eight appearances (seven starts) against Oakland. The Athletics’ roster is batting .326 against him with Jonny Gomes (3-for-9, two homers) and Josh Reddick (6-for-14, two doubles, triple) doing the most damage.
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1. Oakland rookie outfielder Yoenis Cespedes missed the Arizona series after leaving Thursday’s game against Texas in the first inning with a left hamstring strain. He is expected to be available for pinch hitting duty Tuesday. The Athletics are 19-16 with Cespedes in the lineup, 7-19 without him.
2. Colorado shortstop Troy Tulowitzki on Sunday took batting practice for the first time since he injured his left groin May 30 and is expected to be activated when eligible to come off the disabled list Friday in Detroit.
3. The Athletics are 1-5 in interleague play; the Rockies 0-6, all at home.